By Kim Garriott, Principal Consultant, Healthcare Strategies

At the recent HIMSS18 conference, I had the distinct pleasure of working in cooperation with John Daniels, Global Vice President, Healthcare Advisory Services, HIMSS Analytics, to introduce the global HIMSS Analytics Digital Imaging Adoption Model (DIAM) to the North American healthcare IT market.

This was a significant milestone for all imaging professionals worldwide. The DIAM is the collaborative effort of imaging experts around the world to create an eight-stage (0-7) maturity model offering industry-standard guidance and benchmarks for IT adoption of medical imaging best practices. First introduced by HIMSS Analytics and the European Society of Radiology in Europe in 2016, the initial radiology-focused DIAM has now been revised to include a second – and very important – emphasis on enterprise imaging.

Healthcare organizations worldwide will use both the radiology and enterprise imaging DIAM maturity assessments to ensure they are aligned with the industry and with their peer organizations, and to confirm they’re leveraging technology to its fullest extent to provide the best possible outcomes for their patients. The DIAM will also help healthcare providers and vendors alike to identify technology gaps, create a roadmap for improvements, and validate their proficiencies. But perhaps the most important aspect of the new DIAM announcement is that, by extending the DIAM to include enterprise imaging, healthcare IT as an industry has recognized that enterprise imaging’s time has come.

In healthcare IT, to deliver the best patient care possible, it is critical to marry all of a patient’s clinical information and images with their corresponding electronic medical records. Despite the sophistication of available tools and software, however, patient images are still being acquired on unsecured mobile devices, point-of-care ultrasounds are being stored on CDs or memory sticks, and patients are still transporting their own images between healthcare providers. To enable more effective electronic image acquisition and sharing, capabilities must be measured, and image acquisition and management processes must be globally standardized, giving providers undergoing IT transformations a benchmark with which they can gauge their success.  This is why the introduction of the DIAM in North America – including the decision to include a new enterprise imaging assessment – is so important on a worldwide scale.

To create the DIAM standards, representatives from around the globe – including physicians and imaging IT experts from professional societies such as the European Society of Radiology (ESR), the Society of Imaging Informatics in Medicine (SIIM) and the European Society of Medical Imaging Informatics (EUSoMII) – participated, in collaboration with HIMSS Analytics, in the development of the DIAM model, a sister model to the HIMSS Analytics Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM). Also an eight-stage model, the EMRAM measures the adoption and utilization of electronic medical record functions.

Interested in learning more? Hear Logicalis’ Kim Garriott explain the Digital Imaging Adoption Model (DIAM) in a HIMSS18 interview with Aunt Minnie. Next, explore these five tips to help healthcare CIOs prepare for the coming wave of image-related data and its intelligent use. Finally, download and share these four valuable Logicalis healthcare IT reports: Optimizing Every Healthcare IT Dollar: Cost-Effective, Efficient Digital Transformation Requires the Strategic Use of Cloud, Automation and Managed Services,” “Accessible Images, Stronger Outcomes: How Enterprise Imaging Aligns with Value-Based Care,” “Driving Positive Change in Healthcare: An Effective Enterprise Imaging Strategy is a Key to Meaningful Use,” and “How to Design and Implement a Successful Telehealth Program for Your Organization: Nine Key Tactic.”